Aug 5, 2022 - Politics

Activists-turned-candidates win Tennessee legislative races

Charlane Oliver poses for a portrait.
Charlane Oliver. Photo: courtesy of the Oliver campaign

Two candidates who rose through the ranks as social justice activists won their legislative primaries, ushering in a new wave of progressive leadership for Nashville.

State of play: Charlane Oliver won the District 19 Democratic primary to replace retiring Sen. Brenda Gilmore. Oliver defeated former Metro Councilmembers Jerry Maynard and Ludye Wallace.

  • Justin Jones also won a close race for the District 52 House seat. He defeated current Councilmember Delishia Porterfield in the race to replace Rep. Mike Stewart.

Between the lines: Oliver and Jones have emerged as two of the city's most consequential progressive activists.

  • Among other causes, Oliver pushed to expand voting rights.
  • Jones has protested systemic racism and police brutality.
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